Castleford school to gift 1,000 books to set up library in Ghana

Books salvaged from a blaze in a primary school library will be among hundreds sent over to Africa to provide disadvantaged children with reading resources.

Friday, 19th January 2018, 1:22 pm
Updated Friday, 19th January 2018, 1:26 pm
Picture by Allan McKenzie/YWNG - 15/01/18 - Press - Airedale school books, Airedale Junior School, Airedale, England - Class Unicorn 3 loading books into suitcases for Ghana.

Staff and pupils at Airedale Junior School plan to give around 1,000 books to their partner school in Ghana, to set up its first ever library.

The books include dozens that were salvaged by firefighters when a blaze broke out at the Fryston Road school in Castleford in July 2016.

Jeanette Barnes, teaching assistant, said: “The fire damaged four classrooms as well as the library but the firefighters managed to get quite a few of the books out.

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Class Unicorn 3 with Jeanette Barnes and Georgina Bake.

“After the fire, we decided that it would be a great idea to get these books over to our partner school in Ghana, where there are no books at all.

“And as other books in the school have been updated, we have added more and more to the pile. There must be about 1,000.”

The books will be used by around 400 children, aged six to 15.

“They haven’t got any reading material at all,” Mrs Barnes said. “The teacher writes stuff on the board for them to read.

Class Unicorn 3 with Jeanette Barnes and Georgina Bake.

“It will make an amazing difference for them to have a library.

“Our children are really excited to be able to help.”

The primary school linked up with its Ghana partner several years ago as part of the British Council’s Connecting Classrooms project.

The scheme has seen children learn about Ghanian culture and write to their overseas peers, while staff have visited the school in Ghana and welcomed teachers from abroad to Airedale.

Later this year, two teachers will travel to Ghana again to set up the new library.

But they need help to get the books over there.

Mrs Barnes said: “We are struggling with how we are going to do it.

“We are hoping that there might be some local businesses that can help us with getting the books transported over there.”

The school wants to hear from anyone who could help cover the costs of delivering the books or who could provide transport to get the books to Ghana.

Anyone who can help can contact the school on 01977 556 946.